Economists' Outlook

Housing stats and analysis from NAR's research experts.

Instant Reaction: Mortgage Rates, February 9, 2023

Mortgage rates rose slightly this week, following the trend of the bond market. A strong jobs report lifted bond yields and, therefore, mortgage rates. According to Freddie Mac, the rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage ticked up to 6.12% from 6.09% the previous week. With inflation easing, rates will likely resume their downward trek soon.

However, with mortgage rates above the 6% threshold, many renters may wonder if renting is better than owning a home. While there is no one-size-fits-all answer, renters are often paying the same amount in rent as they would for a monthly mortgage if they owned a $300,000 home. The cost of renting and owning a home at this price point is the same at $1,630 every month. Meanwhile, nearly 85% of counties have a median home price lower than $300,000.

Moreover, owning a home has additional economic and social benefits. While owning a home is the primary source of building wealth, research has consistently shown long-term social benefits to individual homeowners and communities.